A 1953 colloquium pondered the question "Did Man Once Live By Beer Alone?"

Photo of glass of beer by Alan Levin

The folks at JSTOR Daily have unearthed the proceedings of a 1953 colloquium that pondered a great question: Did early humanity first cultivate grain not for the purpose of making bread -- but brewing beer? Or, as official title of the event asked, "Did Man Once Live By Beer Alone?"

If the latter is true, then we owe the very concept of agriculture to the delights of getting sozzled.

As the proponents of that theory noted, beer-like drinks are arguably easier to create than bread. The former requires less technology:

The proponents of the beer-before-bread idea noted that the earliest grains might have actually been more suitable for brewing than for baking. For example, some wild wheat and barley varieties had husks or chaff stuck to the grains. Without additional processing, such husk-enclosed grains were useless for making bread—but fit for brewing. Brewing fermented drinks may also have been easier than baking. Making bread is a fairly complex operation that necessitates milling grains and making dough, which in the case of leavened bread requires yeast. It also requires fire and ovens, or heated stones at the least.

On the other hand, as some attendees pointed out, brewing needs only a simple receptacle in which grain can ferment, a chemical reaction that can be easily started in three different ways. Sprouting grain produces its own fermentation enzyme—diastase. There are also various types of yeast naturally present in the environment. Lastly, human saliva also contains fermentation enzymes, which could have started a brewing process in a partially chewed up grain.

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German motorist douses Autobahn car fire with beer

Because of course he did.

Watch this craft brewery canning machine can some beer

There it goes, making little cans of adorable fizzy beverages! Read the rest

LG to unveil home brewing hardware at CES 2019

Being able to dance and dodge my way out of attending the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas every January is one of the most important acts of self-care I commit to all year long. While it's always nice to catch up with colleagues at CES, the crush of human misery, drunk assclowns looking to cheat on their partner while they're off the leash in Vegas, and the multiple viruses that make the rounds each year at the event are a few of my least favorite things. This year, however, I almost regret turning down the opportunity to eat at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill every day for a week in between appointments and trips to the Las Vegas Convention Center: LG Electronics is said to be unveiling a fancy new home beer-brewing kit.

From Tom's Guide:

Similar to other home brewing systems, the HomeBrew uses capsules that contain everything you need—malt, yeast, hops, and flavoring—which you insert into the machine, add water, and press a button.The machine then sets the correct brewing temperature and time, and in about two weeks, will produce up to 10.5 pints (1.3 gallons) of beer.At launch, five packets will be available: American IPA, American Pale Ale, English Stout, a Belgian Witbier and a Czech Pilsner. The HomeBrew also has a self-sanitizing process, to ensure that your batch of beer isn't skunked. An app will also let you monitor the progress of the brew. It takes a lot of the guesswork out of making beer at home.

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Climate change will make beer much more expensive

Over the next century, higher temperatures and an increased number of droughts will hit the global barley supply, pushing beer prices way up. University of East Anglia economist Dabo Guan and his colleagues developed multiple scenarios based on several climate and economic models. Nature:

The researchers then simulated the effect of these droughts and heat waves on barley production by using software to model crop growth and yield on the basis of weather and other variables.

They found that, globally, this extreme weather would reduce barley yield by between 3% and 17%. Some countries fared better than others: tropical areas such as Central and South America were hit badly, but crop yields actually increased in certain temperate areas, including northern China and the United States. Some areas of those countries saw yield increases of up to 90% — but this was not enough to offset the global decrease.

Finally, Guan and his colleagues fed these changes in barley yield into an existing economic model that can account for changes in supply and demand in the global market. This enabled them to look at how reduced barley production would affect pricing and consumption of beer in countries, as well as trade between nations.

In the worst-case scenario, the reduced barley supply worldwide would result in a 16% decrease in global beer consumption in the years of extreme-weather events. Prices would, on average, double...

One goal of the research, Guan says, was to make tangible how "climate change will impact people’s lifestyle... Read the rest

Clear Beer

In Japan, Suntory has come out with a new beverage called All-Free All-Time, a clear, non-alcoholic drink that is purported to taste just like real beer.

The bottles and commercials are pushing this as a drink to enjoy over lunch, at your office, during a meeting, or after you workout.

I tried a swig. A nice hearty stout, it is not.

Photo: Thersa Matsuura Read the rest

Carvel's Fudgie the Whale ice cream cake is now also a beer

Fudgie the Whale is back. But this time it's not just a "whale of a cake," it's a whale of a beer.

On Wednesday, Carvel announced a stout brewed with chocolate crunchies and fudge, aptly named Fudgie the Beer. The stout is a limited-edition Father's Day collaboration with craft microbrewery Captain Lawrence Brewing Company in Elmsford, New York.

The novelty brew is said to have "smooth cocoa notes with a roasted crunchies finish" and would pair well with "roasted or smoked foods as well as chocolate or espresso desserts." If you have a "whale of a dad" and need to get your hands on this special beer, you'll have to head to New York state, as it's only available at the Captain Lawrence Beer Hall. (If you want some for real, be sure to check when it will be available again. The first batch sold out yesterday evening.)

I have just one question: Why, oh why isn't this an ale? It could have been a whALE of a beer.

For old times' sake, here's the original ad for the Fudgie the Whale cake narrated by Tom Carvel himself:

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This alchemist's guide to alcoholic beverages is clever and lovely

Musician Regaip "Rego" Alp Sen created this cool and comprehensive alchemist's guide to alcoholic beverages. Colors and sidebars denote pairing combinations. Read the rest

A Texas brewery made a purple, glittery ale with Peeps

Easter is on April Fools Day this year but what I'm about to share is not a joke.

A brewery in Texas, The Collective Brewing Project in Fort Worth, has crafted a Peeps-filled ale that will be ready for the holiday. It's a collaboration with local bar Lone Star Taps and Caps, according to Dallas Morning News' Guide Live:

Called Peep This Collab, the beer is a sour ale brewed with Peeps, vanilla and butterfly pea flower, which will turn the beverage purple. Brewers added more than 30 boxes of the marshmallow candy, says Steven Roman, general manager of Taps and Caps. And once the beer has fermented, they'll add edible glitter to really make it shine.

Collective's head brewer and co-founder Ryan Deyo says, "Several of us were just sitting around the brewery talking about how beer has become this super serious thing. I've been on a kick to assert beer should be a fun thing... We make a beer with ramen noodles, so Peeps isn't really a stretch." Read the rest

Pabst Blue Ribbon 99-pack

During the holidays, cases of cheap American lager were available to Canadians which isn't exactly news but these weren't ordinary cases. These limited-edition mega-packs were full of 99 "canettes" of Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Canadian hipsters were able to purchase these special packs of PBR at Quebec's convenience store chain Couche-Tard.

And buy they did...

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Only in #Canada can you get a 99 case of beer! Never run out over the #holidays! ow if we can get one on a #ram... #canadianmoparclub #cmc #99pabst

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This isn't the first time a 99-pack of beer has been offered. You may remember that in 2014, Austin Beerworks in Austin, Texas offered one of its Peacemaker ale for $99.

(Foodiggity) Read the rest

This 3D Lucha Libre beer stein is awesome

I just came across the Münkstein collection of modern-day beer mugs and steins. I was particularly taken by their Lucha Libre stein. Why? Because its art pops when you view it with ordinary red-and-cyan 3D glasses (which are included in the sale price of $56).

It's designed by Dr. Alderete (whose art you should definitely check out):

Lucha Libre Beer Stein holds 1 Liter and is 10 inches tall. Fast Cars, Sexy Babes, Aliens, Werewolves and more all take on Lucha Libre for a chilling action packed adventure.

Prints of the art itself are available for $40.

Previously: Ornate Cthulhu stein Read the rest

This is, er, golf cart body-surfing beer-drinking

I bet their parents are very proud.

Occurred on August 9, 2017 / Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, Canada

A few buddies and I were golfing at one of the local courses, the group ahead of us were moving very slow so while we were waiting on them I came up with the idea. We took a few practice laps down the fairway then got out the beers and camera and made this masterpiece.

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Man sues Heineken after finding two dead geckos in his beer can

George Toubbeh of Fountain Valley, California is suing Heineken and grocer The Kroger Co. after allegedly finding two dead geckos in his 24-ounce beer can back in 2015. Apparently they weren't supposed to be in there. From the Los Angeles Times:

According to the suit, Toubbeh noticed that the beer had a foul taste and he immediately began having abdominal pain and started vomiting. His daughter examined the can of beer and found two juvenile leopard geckos inside, the suit states. Geckos are a type of lizard.

“When discovered, the geckos had not been decomposed at all and were likely alive when the beer was poured and sealed into the cans in the bottling and/or canning facility,” the lawsuit states.

Heineken USA, a subsidiary of the Dutch brewing company, said in a statement that it “holds the safety and integrity of the products we import to the highest standards. We have investigated this isolated claim, and based on a number of factors, we confidently believe there is no merit to this claim.”

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Man checks single can of beer on flight

A fellow traveling from Melbourne to Perth, Australia checked a single can of Emu Export lager. He was surprised when it popped out on the the conveyor belt at baggage claim.

“My mate works at the airport and we hatched the plan as a laugh — I half didn’t expect it to come out the other end,” he said.

“But when it did it was sent out well in front of all the other luggage, so the baggage handlers obviously appreciated it.”

(News.com.au)

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Johnny Depp Pimps Beer in Japan

Pirates of the Caribbean 5 not to your taste? How about some ice cold Japanese Asahi Super Dry beer? I can’t get enough. Whether Johnny Depp loves the beer (or just the millions of bucks he was paid by Asahi for making this Japanese TV commercial for their beer) we shall never know.

Hollywood stars (Paul Newman, Tommy Lee Jones, and many others) have a long history of making commercials in Asia that no one in the west is supposed to see. But these days the internet leaves nothing unseen, and so heeeeeeeerrrre’s Johnny!

Via SoraNews 24. Read the rest

Owner of oldest US brewery wins the hearts of trumpkins

"Our guys are behind your father. We need him in there," Dick Yuengling Jr. told Eric Trump this week as he gave the wealthy young scion of the Trump empire a tour of his brewery Pottsville, Pennsylvania.

What will Mr. Yuengling's display of support for Trump do the brewery's bottom line? Maybe nothing in the long run, by most comments on Twitter are from people swearing to never drink Yuenglings again (I've included a couple of tweets from Trump supporters to keep things fair and balanced):

Trump photo by Gage Skidmore. Read the rest

They're making a Twits ale from Roald Dahl's body-yeast

Roald Dahl spent the last of his days in a special armchair that he modded to help him with back pain from a WWII injury; now, in honour of the Dinner at the Twits interactive theatre events, the craft 40FT Brewery has swabbed some yeast from Dahl's chair and cultured it to brew Mr. Twit's Odious Ale, which will be served at the event. Read the rest

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